A local court in Thane’s Bhiwandi district set a new date for framing of charges against Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday in connection with a defamation case filed by an RSS functionary in 2014. As Rahul Gandhi wasn’t present in court today, the court allowed the exemption application by his lawyer but asked the Congress president to be present on April 23 for the hearing.
An RSS functionary from Bhiwandi, Rajesh Kunte, had filed a defamation case against him in 2014 after watching a televised speech in which Rahul accused the RSS of killing Gandhi.
Meanwhile, another defamation case was filed by an RSS swayamsevak and lawyer in Mumbai against Rahul Gandhi along with former party president Sonia Gandhi and CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury for allegedly linking journalist Gauri Lankesh’s murder to the RSS. ournalist Lankesh was killed on September 6 by unidentified assailants at her residence in Karnataka.
The petition by Mumbai-based advocate Dhrutiman Joshi was filed in the Kurla magistrate’s court. Joshi has referred to statements attributed to Rahul and Yechury that were reported in the media in the days after the murder. Both were critical of the RSS and alleged the organisation’s ideology resulted in Lankesh’s murder.